In Ventana Lakes

Scam Smart

Be Scam Smart:
Be Scam Smart by first always following this simple list of do's and don'ts...

1 - DO - USE COMMON SENSE - If it sounds too good to be true it probably is!

2 - DON'T - Give personal information to anyone who contacts you, whether by telephone, email, or by other means.  Keep your personal information safe and guarded at all times.

3 - DON'T - Send money to anyone who claims you have won a prize, a lottery, or anything else, especially where you must first send money to get your winnings.

The following links provide additional scam and fraud prevention tips:


Scam Reports:
The following are examples of Scams we have heard about, or scams that have actually happened to Ventana Lakes residents.  In this world of growing technology, we all must be very careful to keep our identity safe and protected, and not fall pray to a scammer and identity thieves.  Read these Scam Reports, and don't let something like this happen to you.

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July 7, 2015 - You have to appear in court
The following actually found its way to us from the Westbrook Village Computer Club saying that if you receive this or a similar email, do not open the attachment - it is a scam.

Notice to Appear,

You have to appear in the Court on the July 12.
You are kindly asked to prepare and bring the documents relating to the case to Court on the specified date.
Note: If you do not come, the case will be heard in your absence.

The copy of Court Notice is attached to this email.

Yours faithfully,
Rick Bird,
Court Secretary.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  You never never open any attachment to an email unless you are expecting the email, or it is from someone you know.  In a second your computer can be compromised by an attachment if opened and it is malware.  No matter what the email says, unless you are reasonably sure you know what it is just delete it.  Don't let curiosity get the cat...


October 21, 2014 - There is an emergency - call this number
We were told this by a resident today 10/21.  At 6:00am the resident was woken by a telephone call.  The wife got to the phone to answer it but was still half asleep.

The caller told the resident that there was an emergency.  And that they should immediately call a telephone number (caller gave the telephone number).  And hung up.  The husband sensed something was wrong and asked what was going on.

The wife said that there was an emergency, thinking that maybe one of their out of state kids had been in a traffic accident or gotten hurt.  But because she was half asleep when she answered the phone she couldn’t remember the telephone number she was told to call.

She immediately checked her Caller ID and it said  Out of Area.

Thinking quickly and very concern, the resident dialed *69 which is “Last-call return” meaning the telephone system calls back the telephone number that just called you.

A guy answered the phone and the wife recognized his voice as the same person who had just called about an emergency.

The wife then asked what’s going on?

The guy (a little startled at the immediate call back) said something like “you owe the State a lot of money in taxes and I need to collect it now.”  He ID himself as some official and she would be in trouble if she didn’t pay it by phone.

She replied that “I don’t owe any taxes” and hung up.  But was understandably upset.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  Wow – can you imagine receiving a call like this early in the morning while asleep.  It would probably rattle you to the bones.  There is no end to what scammers will try to do to get your money.  We had never heard about this scam before, where the caller starts out by telling you its and emergency and to call a special number.  Don’t let anyone scam you out of your money.  Never send money or give anyone a credit card number who calls you over the phone if you don’t know who they are.  There is no emergency which requires you to “pay” now.


July 21, 2014 - This is the IRS and your being prosecuted
A resident received a phone call where the caller identified themselves as Officer Brian McAllister of the IRS Crime Unit  and they directed the resident to call 202-241-2053 because the resident was being prosecuted.  The resident recognized this as a scam and hung up the phone.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  YES!  This is a scam.  If you do a Google Search on the phone number you will find a lot of information regarding this being a scam.  The IRS will send you registered mail if you are behind in your taxes and close to being prosecuted, and not call you by phone.  This resident did the right thing of just hanging up the phone.


July 15, 2014
You owe the IRS Money - you will be arrested if you do not pay
One of our residents received a telephone call from a gentleman this morning stating he was from the Credit Department and that they owed the IRS money.  He further went on to say that if this call was not returned and their back taxes not paid, they would be arrested.  This resident suggested our community should be advised of this scam.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  You bet it is a scam.  To start the IRS will send you a letter, not a telephone call.  So anytime you receive a telephone call like this just hang up.  This is a Scam and the resident knew it.


May 28, 2014
You won Money and a Car from Publishers Clearing House
The VLPOA Office received a phone call from one of our residents who reported the following:  She received a call from Jamaica stating she had won money and a car from Publishers Clearing House.  She was asked to call another number (which she did not get) to confirm when she would be home to accept these prizes.  She then hung up the phone.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  If it too good to be true... and you know the rest of it.  Please never every attempt to accept any prize from any contest unless you entered the contest.  And, never let anyone you do not know or trust know what you address is.  This is a Scam, and the resident knew it.  This resident did the right thing.


April 10, 2014
We are going to arrest your daughter for not responding to a jury summons
One of our residents received a call from someone who claimed to be a “Sheriff’s Deputy” with the Maricopa County Warrant Division.  This resident was told that a deputy was coming to her home to serve a warrant for the arrest of her daughter since she did not respond to a jury summons.  He explained that if she did not want to be arrested, the fine of $1,545 would need to be paid today; however, if she supplied her credit card number, he would accept $800 today with the rest to be paid in a timely manner.  When the resident explained that her daughter doesn’t live in Arizona anymore, he said it was her responsibility to return the jury summons with that information.  He gave a name of Carl Jones, phone #xxx-xxx-xxxx, x203.  When the resident accused him of being a scam artist, he warned her that she could also be arrested for interfering.  She hung up and called Maricopa County and they told her this was an absolute scam.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  Wow - this is a good one.  But the advise stays the same.  You never give anyone any information, money, or anything they ask for unless you independently verify that they are legitimate.  This resident did the right thing by calling Maricopa County where they told here this was an absolute scam.


April 3, 2014
You have received a Grant so give us you Bank Account record
One of our residents told us today that they received a phone call where the caller told her that she was eligible to receive a grant of $1,000.  The caller than asked for her bank account number so the money could be deposited into her account.  The resident hung up as she realized this was a scam.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says: Yes - This is a scam.  You never, never, never give anyone your back account information over the phone.  No matter how legitimate they sound when they call you.  Just don't do it and it will save you money.


March 27, 2014
You won $55,000 but first send us our processing fee
One of our residents reported receiving a letter from Liberty Financial Services along with a check in the amount of $4,650 advising her she had won $55,000.00.  They requested that a $3,850 processing fee be wired to them.  Upon receipt of that check, they would send the $55,000.00 to her.  This resident thought it would be a good idea to get this info out to our residents and she didn't send the $4,650.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  OK - This one is kind of easy to spot as a scam.  But there is still a lesson here.  Never send anyone any money so you can collect money as winnings.  Most likely, if the resident had sent the money there would be another request for even more money.  But - the resident will never see any money in winnings come their way.  Always remember - If it took good to be true it isn't.

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December 23, 2013
You have won $1,737,000 - Just send us $25 to get your winnings
A resident phoned the Management Office regarding a new scam.  The resident received a communication from H&L Trust Officers from the Netherlands who informed her she has won $1,737,000.  In order to claim that money, she was asked to send them $25.00.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  OK - This one is kind of easy to spot as a scam.  But there is still a lesson here.  Never send anyone any money so you can collect money as winnings.  Most likely, if the resident had sent the $25 there would be another request for even more money.  But - the resident will never see any money in winnings come their way.

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December 22, 2013
We have a delivery for you - will you be home - you must pay for verification with a credit card
Wednesday a week ago, a resident received a phone call from someone saying that he was from some outfit called: "Express Couriers" (The name could have been anything).  He asked if the resident was going to be home because there was a package delivery for them that required a signature. The caller said that the delivery would arrive at our home in roughly an hour, and sure enough, about an hour later, a uniformed delivery man turned up with a beautiful basket of flowers and wine. The residents were very surprised since it did not involve any special occasion or holiday, and they certainly didn't expect anything like it.  Intrigued about who had sent such a gift, the resident inquired as to who the sender was. The deliveryman's reply was, he was only delivering the gift package, but allegedly a card was being sent separately... (the card has never arrived!) There was also a consignment note with the gift.

The delivery man then went on to explain that because the gift contained alcohol, there was a $3.50 "delivery/ verification charge," providing proof that he had actually delivered the package to an adult of legal drinking age, and not just left it on the doorstep where it could be stolen or taken by anyone, especially a minor.

This sounded logical and I offered to pay him cash. He then said that the delivery company required payment to be by credit or debit card only, so that everything is properly accounted for, and this would help in keeping a legal record of the transaction. He added couriers not needing to carry a bunch of cash, would make them less likely targets for robbery.

My husband, who by this time was standing beside me, pulled his wallet out of his pocket with the credit/debit card, and 'John,' the "delivery man," asked my husband to swipe his card on a small mobile card machine. It had a small screen and keypad where Frank was also asked to enter the card's PIN and security number. A receipt was printed out and given to us as our copy of the transaction. He then said everything was in order, and wished us good day.

To our horrible surprise, between Thursday and the following Monday, $4,000 had been charged / withdrawn from our credit / debit account at various ATM machines. It appeared that somehow the "mobile credit card machine," which the deliveryman carried now had all the info necessary to create a "dummy" card with all our card details after my husband swiped our card and entered the requested PIN and security number.

Upon finding out about the illegal transactions on our card, we immediately notified the bank which issued us a new card, and our credit/debit account was closed.

We also personally went to the Police, where it was confirmed that it is definitely a scam because several households had been similarly hit.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch says:  Never never give anyone your credit card information if you are not purchasing something and you originate the transaction.  If you do, then you might get fraudulent charges on your card like this resident did.

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December 3, 2013
Notice on Door from Total Home Delivery - Its a Scam

One of our residents is moving into a home they just purchased, and they found a note on the Front Door from Total Home Delivery saying "Sorry We Missed You."  After researching this on the Internet this is a Scam where someone uses the address (Of an empty home) to receive packages and other items.  We suspect this could be drugs or other illegal materials.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  If you get any kind of notice from Total Home Delivery just ignore it.  If you experience any deliveries at the home that are not yours contact the Peoria Police Department at the non-emergency number (623) 773-8311 and give them the details of the delivery.

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November 18, 2013
Virus Warning - We have a package for you - Click here and get infected

The newest virus circulating is the UPS/Fed Ex/USPS Delivery Failure.  You will receive an e-mail from UPS, Fed Ex, or  USPS along with a package tracking number.  It will say that they were unable to deliver a package sent to you on such-and-such a date.  It then asks you to print out the invoice copy

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  Never click on an attachment to any email unless you trust the sender and you expect the email.  If you receive any email like this that wants you to click on the attachment don't do it because at the instant you click on the attachment you can become infected.  Depending on the virus, it can destroy all your files on your computer.  It is much better to not open an attachment to an email you unexpectedly receive than to get infected.

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November 13, 2013
Wal-Mart is giving you a free $100 gift card if you just give us your credit card information...
A Ventana Lakes Resident received a phone call from someone claiming to be an individual from Wal-Mart offering a $100 free gift card plus an additional gift.  But there would be a $9.00 shipping charge for the gift and the caller then requested their credit card information.  Our resident phoned Wal-Mart and they advised this is a scam.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  You never never give anyone your credit card number, issue date, or security code on the back of your credit card over the phone or via email if you didn't originate the need for your credit card information.  Yes this is a scam, and all the caller is after is your credit card information so they can go on a shopping spree at Wal-Mart.

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September 3, 2013
You just won $2.5 Million in the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes
Just send us a money order for $325...
A resident said that she received a call on Saturday saying she had won $2.5 million in the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes.  The person who called gave the name of Debbie Williams, PCH Personal Agent, with a phone number of 516-692-1499, Cold Springs, NY.  After discussion, Debbie told the resident there was one thing she had to do…..purchase a money pack for $325.00 and then call her when that was done. The money would be returned to her when they sent their representatives (with fanfare) to take her to the bank to collect the winnings.  Needless to say, when she checked the Publishers Clearing House website, it clearly stated that PCH would never ask for any money.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  If it is too good to be true, it isn't.  Never ever give out any personal information to anyone who calls you, and certainly never send anyone money who tells you that you have won a prize.  Tell them to simply take it out of your winnings...  Seriously - No one ever has to pay money to get a prize hand-up.

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August 3, 2013
You Computer is Infected with a Virus and will Shutdown in 2 Days OR
The Department of Homeland Security locked your computer due to a Infraction of Government Policy

An owner was contacted by phone where the caller said that their computer had a virus and it would shutdown in 2 days.  Or your receive a message saying that the Department of Homeland Security is going to lock your computer because of an infraction of Government Policy.  In both cases the caller request that you hire them to either remove the virus from your computer or you pay a fine to release the suspension of your computer.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  Don't do it.  Never never never pay anyone who claims your computer is infected, or it is going to be locked.  This is a scam to get your credit card information which is the only way you could pay for any kind of service like this.  These people will tell you all kinds of things to get your money.

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July27, 2013
Medicare is Updating their Records and needs your Banking Records...
An owner here at Ventana Lakes POA contacted our office today to alert the staff that she had received a phone call which she believes was part of scam.

The caller, a female with a thick accent, notified the owner that “medicare was updating their records and issuing new cards” and “needed to verify information”. This person then proceeded to state the name, address, and phone number of the owner. Once this was verified, this person then asked for banking information. At this point, our owner became suspicious and told the person that this felt like a scam call and the caller immediately disconnected the call. The owner then called the office.

The call came from telephone number 786-358-6691. I’ve made several calls to this number today in an attempt to gather information; the phone number is always busy.

While I cannot confirm that this was indeed a scam call, I shared our owner’s suspicion and felt it was important to alert our owners of this situation.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  You never never never give any personal information to anyone who calls you.  Why?  Because you do not really know who they are.  In this case, if legit or not, the resident did the right thing, and this call should have been reported to the Peoria Police Department with the phone number.  If you believer this is a legit call, you should simply say I will call Medicare directly, hang up, and then call the Medicare office.  And thanks to another resident who got the same call and called Medicare, NO MEDICARE CARDS ARE BEING ISSUED!

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July, 2013
Your Water Line From The Street Could Break And You Need To Get It Replaced Quickly
Several residents of VL have received a notice in the mail informing them that their water line from the street is in danger of breaking and it needs to be immediately replaced.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  There is a very small chance that your water line will break.  In fact we have never heard of this happening unless the water line is hit by something while a hole is being dug.  This is a scam and do not fear that you water line will break.

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December 11, 2012
Your Health Insurance Company Is Calling - We Need To Verify Some Information

This is a version of a health insurance scam that is some years old. You get a call that the caller is with your health insurance company and needs to verify your name, address and the bank where your Social Security check is automatically deposited, so that he/she can send you a new Medicare Card.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  You never give anyone who CALLS YOU any personal information because you really do not know that they are who they say they are.  As always, ask for a phone number where you can reach the caller,  or better yet call the phone number of your health insurer. Chances are it will be the last you hear from the caller.

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December 4, 2012
This is Microsoft Calling - You computer has a virus
A resident reported that they received a call from 210-249-0540 from a company called Novatel.  The woman with a foreign accent said she was from Microsoft in California, and they are receiving information that says my computer keeps showing them that my computer is getting a virus.  The woman asked me to turn my computer on and I told her - It is on!  Then she wanted me to do something to my computer but I asked her what Microsoft program was I running?  She then hung up.  Note that this 210-249-0540 is reported on the Internet to be calling a lot of people and this is a SCAM.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  You never never allow someone who calls you to tell you what to do with your computer because they could have you open a website that then infects your computer and your personal information and identification could be stolen.  If you are having computer issues and you call a computer technician then it is OK to do what that technician tells you to do.  If you originate the call that's OK, but if someone calls you out of the blue about your computer then it is a scam.

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November 13, 2012
You receive a phone call or someone at your door wanting to an energy audit of your home

There is a scam currently making the rounds in AZ. It targets senior citizens, and is called the Energy Scam. Seniors are contacted and offered a review of their energy use in their homes, either at no charge or at a minimum charge. Whether or not the home has an energy issue, they will try to sell the homeowner an attic blanket. In a recent case, the homeowner was charged $15,000 for the work. Please remember, if something sounds too good to be true, it generally is.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  Never let anyone into your home who you yourself have not contacted and requested a service of.  If it is too good to be true - well you know the rest.

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October 10, 2012
Man at door says he is from security company and wants to change batteries in your security system

A resident from the Gardens phoned the office to report someone rang his doorbell yesterday afternoon saying he was there to change the security system batteries.  The resident told him he wasn’t interested and then called his security company and they said they would never send anyone out before informing the resident.  The office suggested to the resident that he call the police and he said he would.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  Never never let anyone into your home who is a stranger and you are not expecting them.  This resident did the right thing by not letting this person into their home.  This was most likely a scam of some kind.  Always politely say "No Thanks" and then immediately call the Peoria Police Department because something was not right with this situation.

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August 27, 2012
Email says it is from COX under going maintenance by our engineers
A resident received the following email:
> From: "Cox Communications"<>
> Subject: Termination Of Your Account
> Date: Mon, 27 Aug 2012 13:44:41 +0800
>  This Email is from cox communications We are under going maintenance
> by our  engineers and we will be shutting down account that is not
> verified to enable us  create more space for our new account users you
> are to verify your account by  filling the outlined Information below or your account will be terminated within 24 hours.
>         ....Username:
>         ....Password:
>         ....City/State:
>         ....Date Of Birth:
>  We value your business and thank you for using service and we
> hope to serve you more better.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  This is a scam.  Someone is trying to hijack your email account.  Never never give anyone your email password, not even a real COX employee.  And never give anyone any personal information who emails you and ask for it, such as you Date of Birth.

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August 13, 2012
Caller tells you that your computer is infected with a virus...

The callers have an urgent warning. They have detected a virus on your computer. They will help you fix it. All you need to do is supply them with a serial number, log in to a website, and provide them remote access.  Some reports even have the caller identifying themselves as a Microsoft employee.

The rest, as they say, is history ... along with your hard drive, any personal information stored on it and your credit card information too.

Because if you didn't have a virus before, it is a virtual guarantee that you will have one after you allow these "official service providers for the Windows operating system" into your computer.

Make no mistake, Microsoft has nothing to do with this company. Authorities and consumer-protection websites in multiple countries warn that the callers want to hack into your computer and charge you for cleaning up non-existent viruses.

The scam, which Microsoft calls an emerging global threat, is working its way through the Valley. Consumers are getting calls from an alleged computer-security firm claiming to warn that viruses have infected their computers.

Ventana Lakes Block Watch Says:  Never never let anyone have access to your computer if someone calls you unsolicited and wants access for any reason.  It is OK if YOU call someone to work on your computer because you initiated the call, but never if someone calls you.

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July 21, 2012
In your room at a hotel you get a call saying there is a problem with your credit card...

You arrive at your hotel and check in at the front desk. When checking in, you give the front desk your credit card (which is normal for any charges against your room). You get to your room and settle in.

Someone calls the front desk and asks for (an example) Room 620 - which happens to be your room. The phone rings in your room. You answer and the person on the other end says the following, 'This is the front desk. When checking in, we came across a problem with your charge card information. Please re-read me your credit card number and verify the last 3 digits numbers on the reverse side of your charge card.'

Not thinking anything, you might give this person your information, since the call seems to come from the front desk. But actually, it is a scam with someone calling from outside the hotel.

If you ever encounter this problem when travelling, tell the caller that you will be down to the front desk to clear up any problems in a few minutes. Then go to the front desk and ask if there was a problem. If there was none, inform the manager of the hotel that someone called to scam you for your credit card information, acting like they were a front desk employee.

VL Block Watch Says:  You NEVER give your credit card information, or for that matter any of your personal information, to anyone who calls you over the phone, or in email, or by letter requesting it WITHOUT FIRST VERIFYING that they are who they say they are.  In the above scam, walk down to the front desk or hang-up and call the front desk, but do not give out your information to the caller because the caller may not be the front desk.

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July 10, 2012
We have a $250,000 Check waiting for you...

One of our residents received a call, supposedly from an employee of UPS. The resident was told that UPS was holding a check for her in the amount of $250,000, and that they needed her account information. As you might guess, our resident did not fall for this one. Personally, I don’t know anyone who has $250,000, so I would be suspicious immediately.

VL Block Watch Says:  If your are ever asked for money to get money, or for your account information to get money, then you should be highly suspicious that it is a scam.  Who calls you to tell you they have a big check waiting for you - NO ONE!

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July 3, 2012
The following was received from the VLPOA Management Office...

They are coming thick and fast, and are, lately, more than we can report on. Here are a few keys to remember:

1.       If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

2.       If they are giving money away, why me (or why you), what did I do to deserve this largess.

3.       If they claim to be relatives, ask the key questions that only a relative would know.

4.       NO, you can’t come in to my house, and if you insist I will call the police.

5.       I never applied for the job you are describing; I don’t want this advance check you are offering; what part of RETIRED don’t you understand.

Finally, in all cases please call the Management Office and the Peoria PD on their non-911 number (623-773-8311). Remember, scammers are only successful when you let them be.

VL Block Watch Says:  Please use common sense.  No one just gives you money or prizes if you did not enter the contest.  Do not send money to anyone who tells you they need help or you have to send money to get a prize you supposedly won.  Never forget that if it is too good to be true it is with a big IT IS!

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July 2, 2012
I need $2000 because the guy who painted you home is in trouble...
Ceclan Curtis of Curtis Coatings has been doing quite a lot of painting for our residents.  One of the residents whose home Ceclan recently painted phoned today to explain that she received a call from a fellow named Tyler who claimed he was Ceclan’s assistant.  He told the resident that he and Ceclan were involved in a drunk driving accident and desperately needed $2000.  He gave an address where to send the money.  He told the resident not to tell anyone since Ceclan did not want this to get around.  When the resident phoned the office to report this, she indicated she would call Ceclan immediately and let him know what happened.  Ceclan, of course, does not have an assistant named Tyler nor was he involved in any accident.  These scam artists know which homes he has painted as he puts signs out in front of these homes.  The resident said he will report this to the Peoria police.

VL Block Watch Says:  This resident did all the right things.  You never never send any money to anyone who just calls you with a story asking you to send money.  And anytime you hear the words "do not tell anyone" this is a give-away that this is a scam.  Always report the incident to the Peoria Police.

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June 20, 2012
Your credit card was deactivated for security purposes so click here...
A resident phoned to tell us about an email he received from “Bank Customer Service”.  The email stated that his Bank of America card had been deactivated for security purposes and to “click” to “reactivate” the account.  He checked with his bank and, of course, they did not send the email.

VL Block Watch Says: Always always check with your bank or credit card service if for any reason you think there is any issue with your credit card and DO NOT click on a link you might receive in an email.  Webpages can be cloned to look exactly like an official bank webpage with the intent to steal your ID and credit card information.

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May 31, 2012
Your car is leaking gas so let us fix it...

Peoria PD sent us this Scam Report:
An elderly Valley couple has been reunited with their vehicle after being nearly scammed out of several thousand dollars.

Phoenix Police said the couple had stopped at a restaurant in the area of 35th Avenue and Northern on Wednesday afternoon when a vehicle pulled up with four people inside.

A man got out of the car and told the couple their gas tank was leaking and that he was a mechanic and could fix the problem for them.

The couple agreed to let the man fix their vehicle.

The wife was instructed to get into the suspects’ car, while the husband let the man, who claimed to be a mechanic, get behind the wheel of their vehicle.

Both cars left the area together, but split up.

The husband was taken to a bank near 43rd Avenue and Northern where he was told to withdraw $9,500 for the repairs. The husband was attempting to get the money when a teller questioned him about the withdrawal.

The teller went outside to speak with the alleged mechanic, which is when the man drove off with the couple’s car.

At around the same time, the wife was taken to a bank at 200 E. Washington where she agreed to withdraw $9,500 from her account. The wife gave her card to one of the suspects, but the card was expired.

The suspects eventually left the wife at the bank after determining that it was taking too long to get her money.

The couple was reunited and their vehicle was eventually found at 43rd Avenue and Glendale. The victims weren’t hurt, and their car wasn’t damaged.

Police said this is third time in the last week that such an incident has occurred in northwest Phoenix.

 VL Block Watch Says: Always always always be very careful when any stranger ask you to get into their car and we highly recommend you don't do it.  It cost a little money but we recommend an auto repair service like the AAA and never trust a stranger that comes up to you saying something is wrong with your vehicle and they can fix it.  We heard on the news today about a similar scam where someone would toss a smoke bomb under an elderly persons vehicle and tell them their car was smoking.  Call 911 if you suspect any foul play or go inside an establishment and explain what is happening and ask foe help.

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May 30, 2012
Let us come into your home to audit your energy use...
One of our residents received a call from a company called Arizona Go Green who wanted to come to her house to do an energy audit. The company also claimed they were authorized by APS and SRP to do these audits. The resident checked with APS who referred her to a company called Energy Stars. Energy Stars does know a company called Arizona Going Green, but had never heard of Arizona Go Green. Arizona Going Green told the resident that they were familiar with this scam.

VL Block Watch Says: You never should allow anyone into your home for any reason if you did not contact the company first yourself.  Here is a case where an unknown company wanted access to a residents home to perform an energy audit - SO THEY SAY.  Be cautious and don't let anyone calling you access to your home.

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May 19, 2012
We are closing down some e-mail accounts...
Dear Cox User
We are closing down some e-mail account due to email violation and  breach of our email policy.  If you still choose to maintain your email with us, you are adviced to send the informations below for security reasons

1. E -mail...........
2. Password............
3. Mobile Phone.......

Account owner that refuses to maintain his/her account after 2-3 working  days of this notification will loose his/her account permanently from our site

VL Block Watch Says: Here is another email scam trying to get your identity.  If they get your email address and password they will send email advertising (spam) to 10's of thousands of people using your email account.  Never never give out your email password to anyone.

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May 18, 2012
Your email account needs to be updated so send us the information...
we wish to inform you that we are shutting down all unused addresses in our site you will have to update your account so that we will know that it's a present  active account to complete your account, you must reply to this email Immediately and e nter your account informations below"

1. Email:
2. Password:
3.Date of birth:

Account owner that refuses to maintain his or her account will loose account. permanently from our site.  Warning !!!  Email user that refuses to maintain his/her account we have the account deactivated permanently.

VL Block Watch Says:  The above email was received by one of our residents on May 28, 2012.  First note how the sentences are structured.  This is not how Americans talk.  Also your email provider already knows your email address, and they do not know your password or date of birth and do not need to know this information.  This is an attempt at identity theft so never respond to an email like this.  If you are concerned about your email account call your email provider by phone and ask if there is any issue with your account.

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May 14, 2012
We have property worth $5 million dollars and you are the beneficiary...

Attn; Sir/Madam,
I am Hon. Benard Ahigbe new appointed UN chairman, wish to inform you know that, Consignment with Serial #. O523/467/VX572, and with Security code CSC/924/WA-XY-065877, Consignment (THREE SEALED TRUNK BOXES) which worth $5 million US dollars, was left here in UN custody by US Veteran Department which
was documented over your name as the beneficiary to receive it from UN agency.
Therefore, you are advice to provide us your present information Home and office address and phone/fax number to reach you and nearest airport were you can receive your consignment from our UN Agency, and also provide us your ID passport, kindly call me back as soon as you receive this mail, attach is my UN ID to proved myself. We are looking forward to hear from you soon.
Many thanks,
Hon. Benard Ahigbe

UN CHAIRMAN Ghana Office

VL Block Watch Says:  No matter how tempting and official something like this sounds, it is a scam.  If you contact someone sending you an email like the above the first thing they will want is for you to send money so the items can clear customs and be shipped to you.  But, you will never receive anything.  Never respond to an email like the above.


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May 2012
Grandmother / Grandfather I need your help, send money, and don't tell mom or dad...

A Ventana Lakes resident received a call from a young man who said he was their grandson.  He told them he was involved in an automobile accident overseas and that he was responsible for $3,800 in damages done to a transformer when he hit a light pole.  He asked his grandfather to send him the money and not to tell his parents.  This particular resident went to the bank and drew out the money but when he was  getting ready to send it, a Manager at Basha’s told them this was a scam.  He also told them several incidences of this nature have occurred during the past several weeks.  Luckily, the Manager caught them in time.  Others have not been so lucky.

VL Block Watch Says:  Ask the caller something personal about the grandson or granddaughter like their middle name, the name of their high school, or even the City they live in and see what happens.  Also, call the parents to check out where the grandson or granddaughter is.  In the above case, the grandfather called the parents to find that their grandson was home safe and sound.  This scam has happened to a number of Ventana Lakes residents.

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May 2012
Two men offer to do work at your home for a low price...

This is a notice from the Peoria Police Department. 
A knock occurs at the door and a subject or subjects are standing there offering to perform some type of work. The latest involves repairing dents or scratches to your vehicle. Once the subject's completes the work, they then ask if they can come in and wash their hands or use the bathroom. While inside your residence, one of the subjects will attempt to distract you while the other subject goes through your personal belongings removing such items as jewelry, money, and other valuables.

Peoria PD Says:  Do not let them inside of your residence.  Do not pay in advance for services.  Always check to make sure the service/repair was done according to expectations and/or agreement.  Do not divulge any personal information or habits, where you work, work hours or scheduled times away from home.

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September 2011
You won a car so you need to send us the money for the title and processing...

A Ventana Lakes resident received a telephone call telling the man that he had won a car in a lottery from another State, but to get the car the he had to send $480 so that the Title could be processed.  The resident was very excited, and the next day he got a money order and sent it to the address he was told to send the money to without asking questions.  About a week later the resident got another call from the same caller as before, telling the man he would now have to send $1,800 to have the car shipped to his home.  But this time the resident's daughter was there visiting, and she overheard the conversation.  She immediately took the phone and started asking questions.  The phone was hung up on.

VL Block Watch Says:  If it is too good to be true it most likely is.  Never send money to anyone without first verifying the validity of the call.  In this case call the State Lottery Office and ask about the winning of the car.  And, ask yourself - Did you purchase a lottery ticket from the state you won in, or have you even ever been in that State?


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July 2011
Your phone rings saying tour credit card is about to be cancelled or there is a problem ...

You receive a recorded message phone call supposedly from your bank telling you that there is a problem with your credit card account and you should call a specified phone number.  When you call the number from the message the first thing you get is another recorded message telling you to enter your credit card number.

VL Block Watch Says:  Don't do it.  As soon as you call the specified phone number and type in your credit card number the thieves have your card number and will start using it.  If you get any type of call like this do not call the specified phone number from the message.  Get the phone number of your bank off the back of your credit card and call that number, and ask if they had called you about a problem with your credit card account.  Most likely there is no problem.